Children’s Sermon

Mark 1:21-28

Casting Out Our “Unclean Spirits”

By Dr. Dan Wuori

Have you ever done something you shouldn’t have?

I know that I have. Sometimes I’m grumpy – or selfish. Sometimes I say things that aren’t so kind. Those aren’t things I’m proud of, but I must admit I make those mistakes sometimes.

In this week’s Gospel story, Jesus meets a man who has an “unclean spirit.” The story describes it almost as if there was a ghost that had taken over the man’s body and was making him act in ways that he shouldn’t have. So Jesus tells the spirit to be quiet and get out of the man’s body – and guess what? It does! It comes right out of his body.

The people watching were all amazed that Jesus was able to do this – that even spirits did what he asked! This is one of the ways that Mark tells us that Jesus’ fame began to spread.

I’ve never had a ghost take over my body – but do you know what? Maybe that’s not really what Mark was trying to help us to understand?

You see, the word “spirit” can mean a ghost, like in his story – but it can also describe our attitudes – or the ways that we think.

And so the more I thought about it, I realized that Jesus helps me to remove unclean spirits too, just like the man in the story. And he can help you.

When I’m feeling grumpy, or selfish – or I’m tempted to do or say something unkind – I try to think about what Jesus would do. And when I do, I almost always manage to change my way of thinking. I leave the wrong – or unclean – thoughts behind and trade them for better ones.

Will you try to do the same this week when you’re faced with a challenge?

Let’s pray.

Dear God,

Thank you for casting out our unclean spirits and helping us to lead good and faithful lives.


Copyright 2009 Dr. Dan Wuori. Used by permission.